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Broward Shipyard may have ended it’s building of yachts, but it is still a full service facility offering a range of marine services. Located in Dania Beach, Florida, the shipyard provides: steel, aluminum and fiberglass constructions and repairs; electrical installation and repair; interior design and remodeling; and exterior, interior and bottom painting. As one of the greatest American builders of motor yachts and with a significant history, we felt the need to include Broward in our shipyards’ category. After all, there are still many Broward yachts cruising the seas.
In 1948 Frank Denison acquired Dooley’s Dry Dock, a Fort Lauderdale shipyard and defense contractor during World War II, building PT boats (Patrol Torpedo). Frank Denison is credited with installing the first diesel engines in a yacht in the mid 1930’s. In 1953 he started to operate under the County name Broward Marine and in the first four years, he successfully contracted various military vessels, from 144feet / 44meters to 173feet / 53meters, for the Dutch and U.S. Navy. Broward Marine became the largest private employer in Broward County. After the end of World War II, Broward Marine shifted its focus back to building custom yachts. The launch of Alisa V established Broward’s position in the world of mega yacht construction, and subsequently the vessels that followed were the start of a tradition of building wooden motor yachts based on the timber lamination techniques. Broward Marine began building some of the finest yachts for the world’s premiere yachtsmen, such as the Jonathan III built for Harry Blum, the founder of Jim Beam Distilleries.
During the 1960’s, yacht owners acquired an increased interest in the quality of interiors and the need for interior design. To meet this demand, Broward and his wife, Gertrude Denison, established Yacht Interiors, which became one of the world’s first yacht interior designers. Some notable examples are Jonathan III of 1959, The Dorisam of 1963, and The Heather of 1965.
By the mid 1970’s, Broward switched from the construction of wooden yachts to the full production of an all-aluminum series of motor yachts. Another first took place in 1973, when Broward Marine developed the first turbine-powered yacht, the 87foot / 27meter EVON.
In 1976, construction began in Saugatuck, Michigan on Broward’s Michigan boatbuilding operation. The Michigan facility became so efficient that it accounted for over 40% of all the Browards build after 1978. The first Michigan-built Broward, BROWNIE’S II, was launched. Operating two boatbuilding facilities allowed Broward to complete between 6 and 8 vessels per year with as many as 10 to 12 vessels under construction at any one time. Innovations in yachting continued rapidly in the 1980’s, as Mrs. Denison designed the first-ever “Country Kitchen” galley, which remains an extremely popular feature on yachts today. Also, in 1983, Broward built the first ever yacht with triple diesel engines in the 92’ JERVET. By the late 1980s, another Broward innovation in yacht building was on the drawing board: the 112foot / 34meters BRITANNIA. Her triple Detroit Diesel 16V92 engines with two outboard engines utilizing variable pitch Ulstein drives and the center engine, powering a Riva Calzoni Jet drive, powered her ahead at an unthinkable 43 knots.
The early 1990s saw the commissioning of BRITANNIA, then PEGASUS, a 130foot / 40meter triple engine tri-deck. By the early 1990s, Frank Denison was looking to go larger, and he accomplished this with the 1996 156foot / 48meter BUBBA TOO. At the time BUBBA TOO was commissioned it was the largest U.S. built aluminum vessel. Over time, approximately 300 Broward yachts (ranging from 60feet / 18meters to 165feet / 50meters) have been successfully launched and delivered to their owners.
The company exchanged hands with various owners over the years. In July 2009 a new company was incorporated, Broward Shipyard Inc., by Bruce and Chris Moore at the Dania Beach location.
For more information on our Broward yachts for sale or to charter a Broward yacht, email the team or call 561.833.4462